AUGUSTA — United Way of Kennebec Valley has raised 74 percent of its $1.7 million campaign goal to date, with two months remaining in the fundraising season. Chris Russell and his 8-year-old daughter Gabby, who are chairing the effort, convened a cabinet of community leaders to help grow United Way’s network of donors, according to a news release from the United Way.

Chris Russell, project manager/supervisor at G&E Roofing and a longtime United Way board member, has met with several businesses in an effort to raise a record-breaking $1.7 million to support new and expanded human service programming.

“Gabby and I are humbled by the campaign’s early success, and I’m proud to live and work in a community that has not only shown my daughter the value of giving back but allowed her to be an important part of the process,” said Chris Russell, according to the release. “We know that every dollar counts when it comes to supporting the people of Kennebec Valley, and we invite more businesses and local folks to join us.”

Early-contributing stakeholders have donated more than $110,000 in new funds through workplace campaigns, individual gifts and grants. United Way’s annual campaign typically engages more than 125 local businesses, representing nearly 3,000 donors. Last year gifts to United Way totaled more than $1.6 million and assisted more than 20,000 people in 48 programs across the region.

United Way continues to grow new initiatives that expand the organization’s footprint. More than 40 civic-minded professionals with a passion for volunteering make up the Emerging Leaders Society, which is open to anyone who donates to United Way at a certain level and volunteers with local organizations.

In addition, Dr. Shanna Gagnon and Nathan Curtis, the owners of Farmingdale-based Gagnon Dental, have invited local businesses to become members of United Way’s 365 Small Business Circle with a dollar-a-day contribution. More than 45 businesses have already joined this community-wide effort.

United Way will unveil its final fundraising total at the annual Campaign Celebration at 5 p.m. Friday, Jan. 31, at Central Maine Power, 83 Edison Drive.

For more information, contact Courtney Yeager at [email protected] or 626-3400, or visit

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